words and images by mk swanson


Maybe this is because I lost Fred, my plot bunny.

I’m not sure why I am titling this post “Fifty;” my birthday in November is not really on my mind. The problem is, I’ve got nothing on my mind, and I can’t figure out how to shift into gear.

I did quit my temporary job, I did begin writing a technical book, I did finish the editing (really, rewrite) project, and I did work on the book store. For the month of September, I felt a sense of accomplishment and the hope that I could maintain my energy as I looked for the next phase of my life.

I also began doing shamanic work for others. That felt very successful, and I wanted to let myself believe that I had become accustomed to seeing myself as a writer and book store owner who also helps people resolve energy problems.

Good luck with that, I say to my four-weeks-ago self.


The book fell through after I spent many hours pounding out more than half of the work; David quit one job and started a new one which he now realizes might have been a mistake; and after some soul-searching, I handed over a revision of the rewrite project to a friend, because I felt I had already done my best work on it, and I would resent every change the author wished to make.

I also led a prose-writing workshop at FWA’s annual conference three 7:00 ams in a row. I loved the prompts, the people, the writing, and the feedback. I also met a fellow energy worker who made me feel that I wasn’t alone, a woman who used to live in my hometown who was a hoot to talk to, and another local writer who seemed like we could simply be friends.

The weekend was a great success, and yet afterwards, I feel exhausted and confused. I knew I was a little lost after the technical book project fell through, but the feeling is magnified now.

What do I do?

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